Discomfort Zone!

I came back from a birthday celebration for my friend Renée, the action was awesome! I was even able to take a life lesson away that a man who can’t dance taught me.  

I’ve always held to the belief that comfort is the enemy of Men.  If we aren’t pushing ourselves to live on the edge of life, then we aren’t learning or growing.  

Renée is a perfect blend of modern hedonistic glee and old-world Witches wisdom. We all met up at Azucar, a Latin dance club in Sao Paulo, Brazil.

While I was watching the gyrations and awesome footwork Renée has on the dance floor I took notice of a very, very average man having a great night with every single woman he took to the dance floor with him.

I watched him look for a beautiful woman, walk over, and whisper something into her ear. It was clearly “Would you like to dance”. She would smile, and get up to dance with him. Then, just as they were about to step on the dance floor he whispered something else to her.

Something I couldn’t hear and that I didn’t understand.

All I saw was that she threw her head back wildly laughing with a huge smile on her face! It took me a minute of watching them dance before I realized what he had said to every single one of the beautiful women that he put under his spell.   What he must have said to her was

(Drum Roll)

“By the way, I don’t know how to dance!” Watching them dance was like watching a swan trying to dance The Bachata with a rhino!

Still, they had more fun than any other couple I had seen all night! When I say “they”, I mean this guy I’ll call Mr. Rhino, and any woman he took out to dance. Nearly every single woman tried unsuccessfully to walk him through even the most basic twist turns and dips. After two or three songs, they would walk off and talk for a minute. Eventually, he would take her phone number, then go run that same brand of awesome game on another beautiful young woman.

Mr. Rhino, I salute you!

Eventually, Renée asked for her present. She asked me to dance with her. Anyone who knows me knows that Watt don’t dance! After a long night of cajoling and coercion I agreed. I did nearly three solid minutes on the dance floor. I did not hurt her, I did not hurt myself, and I only knocked a few people down.

Folks, for me that’s a win!

I wouldn’t have had the courage to do that if I hadn’t watched Mr. Rhino do things on the dance floor that would be classified as Spousal Abuse anywhere outside the dance club!

The menu cover at Azucar Club Cubano!

The menu cover at Azucar Club Cubano!

Something else that kept me firmly in my Discomfort Zone was the first thing I was confronted with when I walked in. Take a look at the picture of the menu.

Did you catch that?

It’s a caricature of every “Black Sambo” / “Nigger Boy” icon that was rampant in the USA during our worst and most tragic times.  It’s a symbol that is used to show People Of Color (not just Black) that they are not welcomed inside.

When I see it plastered on a business that earns the lion’s share of its money on being an accessible outlet to enjoy one aspect of Black Culture it surprised me.

I had to decide between leaving immediately and staying to support an awesome friend on her special day.

I stayed.

HOWEVER, I’m in the process of having a letter transcribed from English to Portuguese that I am sending to the businesses management asking them to discuss the issue.

I’ll keep you posted,

~Watt

YusefWateef (AT) Gmail (DOT) Com

8 comments

  1. Pingback: Discomfort Zone! | Manosphere.com
  2. Estela

    As a white Brazilian woman perspective. Although I understand how uncomfortable you felt with that image I’m not sure that if you send them a complain letter they would give you the kind of answer or would discuss the topic deeply as it deserves to be discussed.
    I might be surprised but what I think will happen is a comment saying “it’s just a drawing”…”can’t you see that funny face?”
    To bring that subject to the table is something new on our history and I really believe that it’s a great contribution of the foreigners because you have been dealing with this issue for a long time.

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    • YusefWateef

      Thank you for helping me understand this. I have always had a great deal of respect for any of the host countries that I have lived in. I plan on sitting down with several of my Brazilian collegues and friends to figure out the correct way to address this, so that I have as much information as I can pull in before I move forward.

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  3. Linda

    That was funny, the part about Mr. Rhino. I don’t quite know what to say (or think) about the Azucar icon, though! It seems very unlikely that the club owners are unaware of its significance. It’s not representative of the name of the club (I know ‘azucar’ means sugar) so, at the very least, it doesn’t make sense. I also read the comment and, if that’s the general attitude, I find that worrisome. Please do keep us posted about the club’s response.

    Like

    • YusefWateef

      I’ve lived in China as well as 15 other countries all over the world. I can safely say that the world definately does not hate “Blacks”. I’ve found that every nation and country has a group that hates people based on color or some other irrelevant characteristic. However, generally people have treated me the way I have treated them. Regardless of my color or thiers.

      You and I have had completely different life experiences.

      What was your experience in China, or other countries like? Where were you born? Where were you raised? Where are you local now?

      I’m looking forward to hearing more from you.

      Sidenote: Excellent reference to Timothy Zahn and “Mitth’raw’nuruodo”!

      Like

      • t3hgrandadmiral

        I can agree that there certainly are good people everywhere that will respect us if we respect them, but i would estimate that the vast majority of any non-Black group dislike and/or look down on Black folks. Maybe you did have a good time, I will not argue that. I had an alright time, but the white worship and disdain that permeates in East Asian cultures cannot be denied.

        Check out Loser Laowai, Randy Flagg on YouTube.

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